Article | Psychological Science

How Implicit Beliefs Influence Trust Recovery

by M. Haselhuhn, M.E. Schweitzer and A. Wood


After a trust violation, some people are quick to forgive, whereas others never trust again. In this report, we identify a key characteristic that moderates trust recovery: implicit beliefs of moral character. Individuals who believe that moral character can change over time (incremental beliefs) are more likely to trust their counterpart following an apology and trustworthy behavior than are individuals who believe that moral character cannot change (entity beliefs).We demonstrate that a simple but powerful message can induce either entity or incremental beliefs about moral character.

Keywords: Values and Beliefs; Trust;


Haselhuhn, M., M.E. Schweitzer, and A. Wood. "How Implicit Beliefs Influence Trust Recovery." Psychological Science 21, no. 5 (May 2010): 645–648.